Excellent news came out today, Friday the 12th of August, as mainland China has lifted the restriction against direct flights from the UK to the mainland.
In late 2020, after the rise of the Covid pandemic, all direct flights from the UK to China were banned by Chinese authorities. This was in reaction to the pandemic, in an attempt to reduce the spread of Covid. These flights have remained banned throughout the few years since the pandemic began but are now being lifted.
The Department for Transport (DfT) reached an agreement with the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) this week in order to allow passenger flights from the UK to resume. This news has been updated on the Foreign Travel Advice website by the FCDO.
This agreement was established by the DfT and the CAAC in response to China’s decision to relax their Covid restrictions for international travellers from around the world, including UK travellers. As a result, UK airlines have been given the green light and can resume direct flights to China.
Under these new restrictions, entry to China and flights are still somewhat severely restricted. If a flight has confirmed Covid cases of 4% or higher, the airline will be required to suspend the operation of that specific route for one flight. If that number reaches 8% or higher, two flights must be suspended for that route.
Passengers will be required to have a visa to enter China, with only select travellers qualifying at present for a visa. There will also be Covid testing on arrival with visitors then required to quarantine for 10 days in approved accommodation.
However, Chinese airlines are expected to continue their flights on the London route ahead of UK airlines. Hong Kong has also relaxed its entry rules for UK arrivals from Friday the 12th of August.
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